Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Be Positive, Be Negative

blood_stickerThey said on TV recently that in the East Midlands, stocks of B Rhesus Negative blood are running very low.

I am B –ve, so yesterday afternoon I went off and donated my armful. I have not given blood for years. Things have changed quite a bit since I first did it in 1973.

No beds, just fancy reclining ‘donation chairs’. Everything is computerized – so when the flow from my arm slowed down, bells start ringing and the nurse comes over to check it out, and encourage me to squeeze the blue sponge thing a bit more. Now you can pre-book an appointment [no sitting about for hours waiting to get to the front of the queue] And packets of 3 biscuits, not a single Rich Tea in the saucer. And a TV on the wall to entertain you whilst the little pouch is filling up. And a sticker at the end of it all.

I am a total coward when it comes to needles, and the whole process makes me queasy. But it didn’t cost me anything apart from time – and it may make a real difference to someone who is ill or injured.

The Spanish Inquisition beforehand is quite long though. I was asked three times for my date of birth – and then “Is there any possibility you might be pregnant, Angela?” [Not at 58 years old, no!]

Best question “Do you engage in any hazardous hobbies?” [does knitting count?]

I didn’t mention Holiday Club, as I thought ‘engaging in insane behaviour with Jelly Tremblers’ might disqualify me on the grounds of insanity.


  1. Brave girl! This is such an important thing to do.

  2. I discovered a couple of weeks ago that if a person had lived in Britain in the 1980's they cant give blood in Switzerland!! Well done :)

  3. I wonder why the question about hazardous hobbies?

  4. Well done you! Donating blood is one thing I keep meaning to do, but never actually get around to. Lesley x

  5. Good for you. Literally life-saving.

  6. Well done! Sadly and ridiculously Chris and I are not allowed to give blood in Canada. Anyone here who has spent 6 months or more in the UK prior to a particular year (which escapes me right now),may be carrying mad cow disease (vCJD). Our blood is deemed unsafe!
    Jane x

  7. Mumasu - I wonder if the Swiss think that you, like Jane in Canada, may be a Mad Cow??

    I suspect the hazardous hobbies is because your blood pressure may be affected, so deep sea divers and motorbike racers could be at risk of fainting/blackouts.

    1. So many British born mad cows running around all over the world!
      Jane x

  8. According to the Independent newspaper the NHS British Blood Plasma Service has been sold to the US private equity firm Bain Capital.

  9. Thank you. I'm B- and not allowed to give blood anymore because there is a tiny but finite risk of me passing on cancer cells.

    Just wondering where this would fit into the Swiss logic... ;-)


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